Customer Spotlight: Roisin Burton
Roisin Burton is an avid gardener and grower, and wanted a way to reduce her carbon footprint whilst growing her own food at home. Luckily, she found Harvst and now owns two of our Sprout Mini-Greenhouses! Roisin took the time to answer some questions for us about her experience with her S6 and S24 – give it a read!
What challenges in your growing journey were you looking to solve that led you on the search for a greenhouse?
I was looking for a way to help reduce my carbon footprint by growing my own veg at home. Unfortunately, due to our English weather – veg doesn’t always get the easiest journey, combined with me being a bit of a novice gardener, the Harvst S24 4-Season model was perfect!
How did you find out about Harvst?
I was browsing the internet to understand more about greenhouse irrigation and heating and I came across the Harvst website. Naturally I then did a little dig on Instagram and was pleasantly surprised with their mini greenhouse offering!
Which Harvst products do you have?
I currently own a 4-Season S24, and a Solar S6. My first purchase was the S24 & I purchased this as I wanted to grow my own veg year round to help reduce my carbon footprint, and also to encourage healthier eating. I was a novice gardener so needed all the assistance I could get, plus my partner is very protective about his lawn therefore pot grown on the patio is the way to go! The height and width of the S24 meant that I could grow salad whilst starting my broad beans in the winter. It also allowed for some handy space to shelter some of my delicate plants through frost. I absolutely loved the ease of the app control and that I could adapt my settings to suit our temperamental English weather. I also lost my mum a little over a year ago, and I really found that growing helped me through this grieving process. The 4-Season S24 allowed me to see the life I had created, progress through the cold winter months!
So, I had just about gripped the basics of the veg gardening and naturally the next challenge is flowers! I had always been intrigued with Harvst’s range of solar mini-greenhouses, as they are so environmentally friendly. I also love the fact that you can place a water tray at the bottom and pump from the tray to ensure that there is minimal water wastage on the smaller models. Again, with my partner being a fierce protector of the lawn space – hanging baskets are the way to go! So I started my journey with plug plants (I may be brave enough to go from seed next year) which needed to be protected from the frost, so I re-potted them and placed them in my S6. Once the weather began heating up I moved them into the hanging baskets, but again we still have a threat of frost until late May in the UK. So, by installing 2 shelves in my S6 this meant I could easily slide my hanging baskets in to protect my young plants until the threat of frost has passed and they have put on their magnificent display!
My next challenge is to see if I can start some flowers from seed, and once they have matured and bloomed I would like to cut them and lay them at my mums grave.
What made you try our product over other mini-greenhouses?
I had spent a long time trawling the internet for mini-greenhouses, irrigation systems, heating etc! Harvst offered the full package in an array of different size mini greenhouses. After reading the background of the company and exploring the website, I found the information that Harvst offered was very straightforward for a novice like me. The website was very professional and they offered good imagery of the systems. I loved the fact that they had an Instagram page so I could see real Harvst users and examples.
What are the main benefits of using an all-year-round enabled mini greenhouse?
I love salad, so I have been growing a combination of cut and come again salad with cress and pea shoots all year round. The light system and the heating system means that I can grow this in the depths of winter and still harvest! I also love the way the greenhouse lights up the garden in the long winter evenings! The self watering facility is fabulous for someone that may be working a lot or even if you are heading off on holiday. Make sure your water butt is filled, set your sprays against a timer or a moisture setting and clear off! With any luck when you get back you will have something delicious to Harvest! Not only this, but as the greenhouse has lighting and heating it means I can overwinter more delicate veggies in there (peppers and chillies) at a greater success than a standard cold frame! It also means I don’t block up all of the windowsills in the house with various pots all year round!
What are some of the main benefits of using two Sprout Mini Greenhouses?
Having two mini-greenhouses means that I can grow a diverse range of plants throughout the year. I can start seeds in my S24 and as the plants begin to mature I can begin “hardening” in my non heated S6. Once they begin to out grow the S6, I can move them back into the S24 to allow for additional height and space on the lower levels of the greenhouse, should they need to be potted up.
I use a combination of heated seed trays and a heated cable in my S24 to manage the lifecycles of the plants throughout the 4 seasons. Another key thing for me is space, having both frames has allowed me to grow items permanently in the S24 (such as my salads) but also to allow me to move items out of the greenhouse as they mature. Having the two also means if I need to panic move things back in to the greenhouse, that I may have prematurely placed out on the patio (as we are about to get frost!), I have the room and ability to place plants of all shapes and sizes back into the greenhouses. Again when I go away in the summer, it means I can place all of my plants in the greenhouses knowing they will be watered without me having to call in a favour with friends or family!
What are the 3 biggest things you love about your mini-greenhouses?
- The 4-Season S24 with its heating, lights and watering allows me to grow year round and protect delicate plants. The self opening vent is also great to make sure I don’t cook my plants accidentally whilst at work!
- The flexibility of the shelving/trays – I can take shelves and trays out of my Sprout which means I can grow taller things, shorter things, wider things. The flexibility is great, which means when I am moving my plants around I can adapt the layout of the greenhouse to fit pretty much anything in!
- Design – I love the modern look of the greenhouses and the materials used, this means that they look less “weathered” than a traditional wooden cold frame/mini greenhouse. This also allows them to maintain a higher temperature than a typical glass greenhouse.
What are the 3 biggest things you love about Harvst?
- The product package – a one-stop-shop for all of the items you need for a 4-season, 3-season, solar or standard mini greenhouse in an array of sizes to fit almost any space.
- Customer service – I have had frequent contact with the Harvst team through Instagram, email, phone and through their community FAQ’s. They are always very helpful and prompt to answer any queries.
- The App! The fact that I can control my greenhouse whilst sat on the sofa watching TV in the middle of winter without having to layer up and go outside and sort something is a dream. I love being able to check the temperature of the soil on my plants using the soil sensors, and also the temperature of the air in the greenhouse itself.
What would you say to other people considering us?
If in doubt, reach out! Speak to the Harvst team – they are great with any questions you may have whether it comes to using the product or whether it is a gardening query. Give them a little stalk on Instagram – they also have some super cool partners which can offer some inspiration as to some of the items you may want to grow in your Sprout!